Interview with Jon from Chatter Communications


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At OpenUp, we firmly believe that prevention pays off. The sooner you take care of your mental health, the more resilient you become: you are able to recover more quickly when faced with setbacks. Work plays an important role in this because the personal and professional always intersect: we take our personal challenges  to work with us, and vice versa. This makes it all the more important to create an environment where employees feel comfortable and are encouraged to speak openly about their concerns.

 

Companies like Chatter Communications share the same mission: to make mental well-being accessible to all employees. Jon Davies, Founding Partner explains the company’s challenges and gives us some insights into the partnership with OpenUp.

Was there an event or a situation that led you to partner with OpenUp or what led you to partner with us?

 

Coming out of the Covid pandemic saw a big upswing in business for us – suddenly we were very busy and needed to grow our team faster than we could keep up with. This meant a period where we knew our team was working exceedingly hard for an extended period and while we were taking action to address the issues, we knew it would take time to fix. OpenUp was a perfect complement to other activities to provide a little extra support to our team during (and after!) that period.

 

 

What made you choose OpenUp over other alternatives?

 

Our existing private health scheme had some health and well-being support built in, but it was time limited and not everyone had elected to join the scheme. So the way that OpenUp was available to all employees and unlimited to use was a big attraction, as well as the very low barrier to entry for anyone to jump in and book a session.

 

 

How did you launch OpenUp, and how do you keep it front-of-mind amongst employees?

 

We launched OpenUp using the materials from the onboarding kit provided, initially with a presentation at our monthly team meeting. We also sent emails and added content to our intranet. We’ve made sure our three mental health first aiders know they can signpost people to OpenUp when needed. Now it’s been launched, we email the team monthly with details of the latest developments, masterclasses and courses to remind them OpenUp is there.

“The way that OpenUp was available to all employees and unlimited to use was a big attraction, as well as the very low barrier to entry for anyone to jump in and book a session.”

Your experience so far: how has OpenUp helped to support the well-being of your people, particularly given the fast-moving nature of your everyday work? 

 

We’ve seen around 20% of the team use OpenUp and feedback has been great from those who’ve given it a try. In particular, knowing the service is always on hand and unlimited has been really helpful. And we’re reinforcing the message that OpenUp can help with any issue, whether it’s personal or work related.

 

Why do you think resilience amongst employees is important in your industry? Where and why is it needed in your day-to-day business?

 

Advertising, Marketing and Consultancy is a service industry with high expectations from clients, a fast pace and often challenging deadlines. So, cultivating resilience for when times get tough is important, to make sure everyone can enjoy the good times too.

 

What does the wider benefits / well-being provision you give your employees look like? How does OpenUp fit into that?

 

On top of OpenUp, we also have three trained mental health first aiders. Private health is available to all full-time employees and we have a program of regular social events which include alcohol-free options like our book club and cinema club. We also close our office on Friday afternoons, giving everyone the opportunity to finish up early for the weekend, or to tie up loose ends with minimal distractions.

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“Advertising, Marketing and Consultancy is a service industry with high expectations from clients, a fast pace and often challenging deadlines. So, cultivating resilience for when times get tough is important, to make sure everyone can enjoy the good times too.”

What’s your top tip for supporting your own well-being?

 

Taking time out to stop, breathe and consider if things can wait when I feel like I’m overwhelmed with work can be easier said than done. But it’s a practice I’ve found incredibly helpful day-to-day. And of course, it’s a simple thing, but scheduling a lunch break in your calendar so you have some uninterrupted time in the middle of the day is vital!

 

 

What role do employee well-being benefits play in employer branding?

 

Employee well-being is integral to having a great employer brand: when you look after your people, they’ll look after your customers in a way that keeps them coming back again and again. As well as making sure that the people who you spend time and effort recruiting stick with you for the long term. 

 

We call it making people matter, and you can find out more about our approach at welovechatter.com

Want to find out how OpenUp can help your organisation?

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